#763 GrimGrimoire

Posted: 24th January 2020 by Jeroen in Games
Tags: , , , , , ,

840th played so far

Genre: Strategy
Platform: Playstation 2
Year of Release: 2007
Developer: Vanillaware/Nippon Ichi
Publisher: Nippon Ichi/NIS America/Koei

With GrimGrimoire, I continue my exploration of strategy games on the console. While a game like Halo Wars draws on the RTS genre, it looks like GrimGrimoire draws more on the likes of Dungeon Keeper, less units with more individuality. The magic angle certainly makes it look like there’s more there.

Our Thoughts

While the game feels like Dungeon Keeper, the first impression comes from the almost visual-novel style story that is being told – longer introduction that, at first, serve to introduce a bunch of characters. There’s a good reason why it does that later in the story, with some weird time mechanics that feel like a story that is more interesting to explore. It ties into your magic progression as well, in a way that shows how much more you’re learning while giving the characters a chance to settle into different stories.

When you get to the strategy game – which happens sooner in some cases than in others – it builds up the challenge quite nicely. You build ruins that allow you to summon creatures, not too different from other RTS buildings, but with smaller teams that are constrained by your resources. As you go on, you get to learn more spells and runes, which unlock further creatures and spells. It means there is a good explanation for your progression – explained by the story taking place in a magic academy. Because of that, you also get a playing field that’s vertical rather than horizontal, which makes the travel between floors quite a bit more interesting.

The units feel quite distinct as well, with some heavy hitters and faster units. There’s a big difference in movement as well, whether they can fly or not, and that really helps a lot to define them. Most interesting is the dragon, which is expensive and time consuming to summon, but it’s amazingly strong. The level where it’s introduced puts you against some, while teaching you some lessons on how to handle them as well. It feels good and stays a lot of fun.

Final Thoughts

The magic angle, with its summoning runes and other restrictions, make for a game that’s a lot more interesting to play and explore. When digging deeper, you see a lot in common with other strategy games, but somehow it feels distinct enough to stand out. It’s a game I want to dive bak into, not in the least because the story of the game is different enough to catch my attention.

  1. […] GrimGrimoire was a surprisingly fun strategy game and while there were moments where I did struggle with parts, I feel like the story that’s being told is engaging and needs to be explored further. Dissidia Final Fantasy was just as surprising, but it might just be the fighting game that’s perfect for me. […]

  2. […] made possible by better hardware while not being big enough to constrain by the size you might get. GrimGrimoire is on the edge of an RPG definition is there, while Grandia II and Dragon Quest VIII play with their […]